Amanda Diekman

Amanda Diekman

Professor, Psychological and Brain Sciences


  • Ph.D., Northwestern University, 2000
  • M.A., Northwestern University, 1997
  • B.A., Kenyon College, 1995

Research interests

Our research group investigates how individuals navigate the social structure, and how the social structure influences perceived and actual characteristics of groups. My longstanding interest is in gender roles, and especially how gender roles have remained stable and changed over time. We explore how motivation intersects with the social structure to produce entry into or exist from specific social roles. In particular, we examine the antecedents and consequences of widespread beliefs that STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields do not afford communal goals (that is, opportunities for altruism or collaboration). Because gender roles emphasize communal attributes for women, these affordance beliefs can be an obstacle to women’s engagement in STEM. Activities that disrupt these stereotypic expectations – that is, those that highlight how STEM roles afford communal goals – yield motivational benefits.

Representative publications

Social role theory of sex differences and similarities: A current appraisal (2000)
Alice H Eagly, Wendy Wood and Amanda B Diekman
The developmental social psychology of gender, 12 174

Stereotypes as dynamic constructs: Women and men of the past, present, and future (2000)
Amanda B Diekman and Alice H Eagly
Personality and social psychology bulletin, 26 (10), 1171-1188

Seeking congruity between goals and roles: A new look at why women opt out of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics careers (2010)
Amanda B Diekman, Elizabeth R Brown, Amanda M Johnston and Emily K Clark
Psychological Science, 21 (8), 1051-1057

Gender gaps in sociopolitical attitudes: A social psychological analysis (2004)
Alice H Eagly, Amanda B Diekman, Mary C Johannesen-Schmidt and Anne M Koenig
Journal of personality and social psychology, 87 (6), 796

What is the problem? Prejudice as an attitude-in-context (2005)
Alice H Eagly and Amanda B Diekman
On the nature of prejudice: Fifty years after Allport, 19-35

Malleability in communal goals and beliefs influences attraction to stem careers: Evidence for a goal congruity perspective (2011)
Amanda B Diekman, Emily K Clark, Amanda M Johnston, Elizabeth R Brown and Mia Steinberg
Journal of personality and social psychology, 101 (5), 902

Rolling with the changes: A role congruity perspective on gender norms (2006)
Amanda B Diekman and Wind Goodfriend
Psychology of Women Quarterly, 30 (4), 369-383

Learning to be little women and little men: The inequitable gender equality of nonsexist children's literature (2004)
Amanda B Diekman and Sarah K Murnen
Sex roles, 50 (6-May), 373-385

Dynamic stereotypes of power: Perceived change and stability in gender hierarchies (2004)
Amanda B Diekman, Wind Goodfriend and Stephanie Goodwin
Sex Roles, 50 (4-Mar), 201-215

Dynamic stereotypes about women and men in Latin America and the United States (2005)
Amanda B Diekman, Alice H Eagly, Antonio Mladinic and Maria Cristina Ferreira
Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 36 (2), 209-226

Of men, women, and motivation (2008)
Amanda B Diekman and Alice H Eagly
Handbook of motivation science, 434-447

On motivated role selection: Gender beliefs, distant goals, and career interest (2009)
Clifford D Evans and Amanda B Diekman
Psychology of Women Quarterly, 33 (2), 235-249

Accuracy and bias in stereotypes about the social and political attitudes of women and men (2002)
Amanda B Diekman, Alice H Eagly and Patrick Kulesa
Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 38 (3), 268-282

Love means never having to be careful: The relationship between reading romance novels and safe sex behavior (2000)
Amanda B Diekman, Wendi L Gardner and Mary McDonald
Psychology of Women Quarterly, 24 (2), 179-188

New routes to recruiting and retaining women in STEM: Policy implications of a communal goal congruity perspective (2015)
Amanda B Diekman, Erica S Weisgram and Aimee L Belanger
Social Issues and Policy Review, 9 (1), 52-88